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Clarissa's Blog

An academic's opinions on feminism, politics, literature, philosophy, teaching, academia, and a lot more.

Sunday Link Encyclopedia and Self-Promotion

A practical example of how to be a good friend to an autistic.

Among the self-hating posts of academia-bashers, it is so nice to hear a reasonable voice explaining why a PhD in literature is never a waste of time.

What kind of idiots place schools, playgrounds and retirement homes right next to a fertilizer plant in  a sparsely populated area?

For those who bellyached that I had no proof that homeschooled children experienced being deprived of school as suffering and abuse, here is a link that is chock-full of proof: “Legally, parents have enormous discretion in raising their children: in some states, there’s no oversight at all over homeschooling curricula, meaning that it’s perfectly fine to educate daughters for a life of housewifery rather than for higher education. Some people involved in Homeschoolers Anonymous hope eventually to change that. Meanwhile, along with their own stories, they offer advice about survival.” I’m still waiting for an apology from the hysterics who bashed me for speaking the truth about this abusive practice.

Authorities consistently refuse to charge a person who rapes a toddler with rape.

If you need even more proof that police in Quebec is absolutely impotent and completely useless, read this. It’s useless to call the police in Montreal. “Can’t you figure it out on your own?” an officer yawns in a bored voice when you try to report a drunk driver or an assault. “Are you sure you want me to take your statement? Really?” An eye-roll, a deep sigh, a petulant facial expression. “Well, stick around here, I’ll be back.” After which the officer disappears forever and goes back to his favorite job of hunting down the law-abiding burghers who may have not stopped for a full minute at a stop sign.

What you shouldn’t say to a recruiter or a hiring manager.

What’s happening in North Korea?

A really good post on makeup.

Why are the discussions of the urgently necessary homeschooling reform a taboo?

We talked about oral stage trauma and here is a great post on how some people produce anal stage trauma.

And the post of the week: why it is wrong to compare mugging to rape.

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19 thoughts on “Sunday Link Encyclopedia and Self-Promotion

  1. Anonymous on said:

    // A really good post on makeup.

    I read it before, and what stood out to me was:

    “And there is a dark side to my makeup. While it’s true that I don’t wear my makeup to impress other people, it’s also true that I hate my face. I hate it. I hate the way I look and I hate it when people see me without my makeup because all I feel is ugly. I wear makeup to impress myself and change the way I look because I am ferociously disappointed with what I see in the mirror.”

    This approach is anything, but healthy. The post reinforces the narrative of *always* make-up wearing women as psychologically unhealthy.

    // What kind of idiots place schools, playgrounds and retirement homes right next to a fertilizer plant in a sparsely populated area?

    I heard on TV that most people in this small town worked at the plant, so I guess they wanted to live near their place of work. Otherwise, there is a need for a car. Again, more cars. Since I don’t think there would be a good public transportation in the sparsely populated region. Of course, it people *live* near the plant, what sense does it make to send children to school far away?

    Btw, I read how this (fortunately) relatively small terrorist act got such coverage, celebrations as if Osama got caught, a huge area devoid of normal life for a long time to catch 1 person, people talk about more civil liberties being taken away, etc VS a plant “erupting”, as a result of unsufficient regulation & enforcement of existing regulation, and nobody bats an eyelash, in comparison. The narrative of more freedom to markets, less regulations, is as alive as ever, no?

    – el

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    • “I heard on TV that most people in this small town worked at the plant, so I guess they wanted to live near their place of work. Otherwise, there is a need for a car. Again, more cars.”

      – Oh, come on. This is Texas. They all have cars, and definitely more than one in each family. As for schools, school-children are supposed to be taken to school by school-bus. And as for the retirement home, I don’t even know what explanation has been invented.

      “Of course, it people *live* near the plant, what sense does it make to send children to school far away?”

      – A parent who sends children to a school near a poisonous plant is a criminal.

      “This approach is anything, but healthy. The post reinforces the narrative of *always* make-up wearing women as psychologically unhealthy.”

      – I have a feeling that paragraph was added to the post as an afterthought because it would never have been published on that blog without it. That is a blog that does not publish accounts of women who are not victims all of the time.

      Like

  2. Anonymous on said:

    Forgot to add:

    // Why is criticizing public schools and calling for public school reform seen as healthy and good while criticizing homeschooling and calling for homeschool reform is taboo?

    Because public ed is seen as a job to be done, while homeschooling – as a parent’s identity. They perceive it in the same fashion as being told they practise their religion wrong, since homeschooling is literally a part of their religion (most often) or some other part of identity.

    – el

    Like

  3. canbebitter on said:

    very chuffed to be included as your post of the week! lots of great reading this week, thank you.

    Like

  4. Thanks for the link, Clarissa.

    Dan

    Like

  5. I wrote a post about the ballad Leesome Brand, which unfortunately also relates to the theme of child molestation.
    http://betterknowachildballad.wordpress.com/2013/04/21/child-15-leesome-brand/

    Like

  6. Clarissa, you say “Only deeply patriarchal societies give parents such power over the life of children. Hence, the word ‘patriarchal.'”

    Who should have that power? The state? The church? Some other entity?

    Too few parents want to have anything to do with the education of their children, be they in public or private schools. Their abdication of parental responsibility leads to a statist society in which whatever the state may desire becomes increasingly easy to accomplish. That strikes me as undesirable.

    Like

    • “Who should have that power? The state? The church? Some other entity?”

      – Since the XVIIIth century, Western societies seem to be in agreement on this issue. One of the principles of the Enlightenment is that everybody, irrespective of their origins, deserves to be given basic education for free and nobody is entitled to take away that right. The United States is a country that was formed on the basis of Enlightened principles and I see no reason to go against the country’s history.

      In the same way and for the same reason, parents in developed societies do not have the right to marry their children against their will or sell them. And nobody sees this as a denial of parental responsibility.

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      • One of the principles of the Enlightenment is that everybody, irrespective of their origins, deserves to be given basic education for free and nobody is entitled to take away that right.

        Nobody should take away that right, nor have I heard it urged that anyone should. But what about those who want to send their children to private school and pay for it? Would you deny them that right? How about those who find public school education inadequate and decide on other venues?

        To the extent that the state monopolizes education, might it not cause those entrusted solely to its care to become increasingly receptive to state control in other areas?

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        • “But what about those who want to send their children to private school and pay for it? Would you deny them that right? How about those who find public school education inadequate and decide on other venues?”

          – This depends on what the other venues are like. If we are talking about education provided by educated, licensed teachers with diplomas from certified university programs, there is no problem. But if we are talking about people who are not certified to teach, then they shouldn’t be allowed to teach in the same way as I, for instance, do not have the right to treat illnesses or drill teeth.

          “To the extent that the state monopolizes education, might it not cause those entrusted solely to its care to become increasingly receptive to state control in other areas?”

          – No, it doesn’t work this way. Irrespective of what is taught at school, the greatest influence on a person’s life is what happens at home. If this weren’t true then I would most certainly be a passionate Leninist. 🙂

          Like

  7. Here’s an interesting article on why the Bitcoin is not a currency, but a late-1990s style tech bubble (I have never heard any argument as to why this is a good idea): http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/04/bitcoin-is-no-longer-a-currency/274859/

    A bit of casual transphobia from the marketers of “Arrested Development” (which is really too bad, as I’m actually quite fond of the series): http://freethoughtblogs.com/zinniajones/2013/04/arrested-development-of-good-taste/

    And finally, an undergraduate student in economics has discovered fundamental calculation flaws in a seminal paper arguing for austerity: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-22223190
    My take on the subject is here:
    http://voxcorvegis.wordpress.com/2013/04/20/the-fallibility-of-peer-review/

    Like

  8. How some people see their children as “Trained Monkeys and Seeing-Eye Dogs”:
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/lovejoyfeminism/2013/04/trained-monkeys-and-seeing-eye-dogs.html

    Just horrible.

    Like

    • The quote from the fundamentalist’s book is awful. But the blogger’s response is not all that much better:

      “Yes, children sometimes fall apart in Wal-Mart. So? Don’t take them to Wal-Mart if they’re tired and make allowances for the fact that they may very legitimately want to visit the toy aisle. Yes, children sometimes scream and carry on when you’re trying to talk on the phone. So? ”

      If children “fall apart” (???) and scream, then that means there is a huge problem there already. And “So?” is not a normal response from an adult. There is nothing normal or “legitimate” in these behaviors. They are a sign of problems that need to be addressed immediately.

      Like

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